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Does your Kindergarten child have trouble concentrating after lunch

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#1 overthehill

Posted 22 February 2013 - 05:28 PM

DS started  kindergarten 3weeks ago and as well as having a few sensory issues the teachers have said that after lunch he pretty much switches off and doesn't concentrate.
He still has the occasional day sleep in the car on weekends so I know he must be tired, but the teachers say this is not 'normal' behaviour for kindy kids which surprised me as I thought some kids would need a bit of an adjustment period.
So I'm just interested if this does happen at the beginning of the 1st term in your kids class and if it how did the school deal with it?

#2 baddmammajamma

Posted 22 February 2013 - 05:48 PM

Hi there:

I remember your post from last week re the sensory concerns.

It could well be that your poor little guy is just EXHAUSTED if he is dealing with sensory overload and possibly some anxiety (I know you mentioned he had been battled anxiety in the past). When my daughter was in kindergarten/FYOS, she found all of the sensory input to be draining for all those hours.

Teachers *do* see a lot of children and often can have a very informed view on what constitutes "normal" settling in.

(The cynical interpretation would be that your son's teachers have pegged him as "the kid with issues," and they want to push you to seek a diagnosis of some sort -- unfortunately, that does happen from time to time).
As I mentioned in my earlier reply to you, I definitely think you should forge ahead with the sensory assessment with an OT but also still consider consulting a developmental paed, esp. given that your son has had some other challenges in the past. That way, you will truly learn whether there is SOMETHING going on (or not) and you can let the school know that you've taken their concerns on board & have had things properly checked out.

If I were you, I would sit down with the teachers and say, "We are looking into any potential issues that might be driving Johnny's sensory sensitivities and apparent lack of concentration & energy after lunch, but since we won't have those answers right away, I'd like to get your input on what sorts of strategies can be used in the immediate term to help Johnny settle in better." Something like that. You want to signal to them "I am taking your concerns seriously, but I also need your guidance and support in helping my child succeed. Let's collaborate." original.gif

Good luck! Hope things settle down soon.

Edited by baddmammajamma, 22 February 2013 - 05:54 PM.

#3 overthehill

Posted 22 February 2013 - 07:14 PM

Hi BMJ,  
We have the OT assessment next Friday so hopefully things will be a lot clearer soon.
I definitely feel they have him down as the problem child so quickly, that is why I wondered if this was quite common at kindergarten for kids to zone out in the afternoon because they really make me feel that he is the only one causing any disruption but surely not all 90 kids can sit still and listen already!  After the assessment I will go back to them and ask, like you said, what strategies they can implement in the meantime.

#4 DrFeral

Posted 23 February 2013 - 01:25 PM

If he's getting tired it might be also worth getting him checked out physically to make sure there's nothing wrong there either.  Something as simple as eye strain could be causing it.  I am only saying the because after 3 years worth of school we've discovered the problem with behaviour (refusing to do work, difficulty focusing on tasks on the board or written tasks) and tiredness and what we thought was unresolved torticollis is actually due to eye muscle issues.  Poor thing has been seeing double all this time. It wasn't picked up because you could never tell- he does so well academically otherwise and was actually on the highest reading level in his class etc. so you'd never guess he was struggling to read or copy off the board or subtle things like him covering one eye to see his work properly.  Instead teachers had labelled him as "lazy" or "difficult to engage" as he'd try his best to get out of the most frustrating tasks or sometimes not even try very much at all.

#5 lilwonder

Posted 23 February 2013 - 03:11 PM

I can see you are looking into some other issues with your son as well, but as for your question in general I would say that many kids in my experience are like that - and not always just in the first year or so! Not sure how old he is but I know my 4.5 year old gets a bit silly and over it after lunch and as a teacher even Year3/4 kids do their best/most concentrated work in the morning, there is a reason why teacher's usually plan less mentally taxing stuff after lunch!

#6 Julie3Girls

Posted 24 February 2013 - 02:34 PM

This is the reason our school structures their school day the way they do ...2 hrs solid learning in morning, with crunch and sip in there.  Most of literacy and maths gets done.  Then lunch, to give the kids a brain boost with food, and plenty of time to run and play. Ready for another solid 1.5 learning session. Recess then another hour or so in the afternoon which is much more relaxed, usually craft etc

So I think, just starting first year of school, only a couple of weeks in, it's normal for them to be tired. I know one little kinder who is falling asleep in t he afternoon after school most days, she is just tired.

That said, I'd imagine an experienced teacher would be able to pick when it more than the usual, so I would be having a chat with her about it.

#7 overthehill

Posted 27 February 2013 - 09:37 PM

Thanks for these replies. I went to the initial OT appointment and she said perhaps DS has some core strength issues and also as she thinks he has sensory defensiveness the sensory overload could cause him to be exhausted. She is meeting him Friday to assess him.
I think what's bothering me is that the teachers aren't positive or constructive about his behaviour so far, their attitude is that he is the disruptive child.  I feel there are reasons for this that we need to look into.  However the teacher has told me he is defiant.  I feel like they are judging him prematurely so the OT assessment will hopefully give us something to work on.

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